Department of
    Earth Science
Northeastern Illinois University

       J Hemzacek homepage

Spring 2012

 Sections 1, 2, 3  (M W 11-11:50; various labs)

       Review for final exam - final version

Announcements  reminder about the final!!

Schedule of Activities & Assignments
("live" version of syllabus, with links for assignments)
jump to
Assignment Details

new assignment posted-18 Apr

Rock Your State final requirements
rubric for some assignments
Lab Prep Requirements Course Requirements / Grading



 WIKI  Section 1 WIKI Section 2 WIKI Section 3

Wiki trouble?  Read the instructions again!

Class Resources and Links

NEIU Emergency Information


Instructor and General Course Information

Instructor/ Contact Info
printable course documents:
  intended topic schedule; important dates
  general course info
       (overview, goals, grading; rules & tips for success)
  LAB schedule:        Sec 1           Sec 2           Sec 3
  General Education program info
Course Description/Outcomes



Emergency Information:
It is recognized that a safe university environment is a shared responsibility of faculty, staff, and students, all of whom are expected to familiarize themselves with and cooperate with emergency procedures.
Web links to Campus Safety: Emergency Procedures and Safety Information can be found on NEIUport on the MyNEIU tab or as follows (for the Main campus):











right here on campus!
see your classmates' photos here


Resources and Links used in class:

Types of deformation:
ductile/brittle               silly putty time lapse       sP1          SP drop
         rock deformation images:    ductile1    ductile2       ductile and brittle
                                           structural images
         convection:    lava lamp       real mantle convection

                     lavalamp1         lavalamp2

 hydrologic cycle/system:     USGS         IWR         NRCS         EoE

 volcanic eruptions:          Hawaii1          MtStHelens

                                         virtual volcano                 figure

              active1        active2         Volcano Explosivity Index
                                                            (and recurrence interval)

               magmas, igneous rocks, volcanoes

phase diagram
diamond & graphite1


sedimentary environments
           sedimentary depositional environments listing

gcse 5. Sedimentary Rocks

stratigraphy and time

folding & faulting           foldfault2            types of faults
          cross sec1

NOVA presentation about the Japan earthquake and tsunami:
available online at:
NOVA | Japan's Killer Quake

Earthquake Hazards Program

tornado1                      animation
             preparedness guide

Earth-Sun Relations

 hydrologic cycle/system:      NRCS  

weather wise (lessons in weather)
            air masses            fronts                Coriolis effect
                                 cyclonic flow

            severe weather primer

El Niño and La Niña


wthrg1         wthrg2        wthrg3








27 April

Some quick reminders:  our final regular class meeting is on Monday, 30 April.
Our final exam period is on Wednesday, 2 May, from 2:00 - 3:50 pm, which is NOT the same as our
regularly scheduled class time! 

2 April

Yes, it's definitely Monday!  
I totally neglected to mention, as a reminder, about a little thing -- as listed on our syllabus -- coming up next Monday:   It is time for Exam 3!!            Review list (draft version) will be posted later today.

29 Feb

Well, I still think it was great to get outside today!  It was a little windy, and some of you thought that it was chilly, but it was a beautiful day for February in Chicago.  :o)
To everyone who has the team photos of weathering: please email them to me with the following information:
-- names of all team-members, with section numbers if you know them
-- brief description of what each photo shows
If you have any difficulty emailing the images, let me know and I will figure out an alternative.
Thanks, everyone!

28 Feb

Reminder about the wiki:
If you are having any troubles with accessing the wiki, please refer to the instructions that are posted here.

If you have a question or problem (OR to get started by gaining access to the wiki), DO NOT contact me through gmail/google!!  You must communicate with me through my NEIU email account, or I will not see it!

16 Feb

New assignment due Monday!  First assignment for Rock your State is due by lab session: Sec 1, 2 - Wednesday, 22 Feb; Sec 3, Monday 27 Feb.  See lab prep for details.

6 Feb

Updated review list is posted; see top of home page
Reminder: Sec 1 & Sec 2 labs will not meet on Wed, 8 Feb (see your syllabus).  Be sure to check the webpage updates later this week for information about using the wiki to sign up for your choice on our "mini project".

1 Feb

New homework assignment for next week coming soon; you will also need to become a member of our class wiki site.  For detailed steps on how to join the class wiki, click here.

24 Jan

New homework assignment!  See assignment page. 
Additional (optional) worksheet to help you organize your lab data - see lab prep link.

16 Jan

Check the assignment page for required lab preparation/ assignment for LAB WEEK 2

9 Jan

Your first assignment is posted; use the link for the "live syllabus" to see assignments by due date; or jump directly to assignment details
regarding  texts for this class No specific textbook is required; however, each student must have access to appropriate text references to adequately supplement course topics.  Any earth science or physical geology textbook, published by a scientific or academic publisher in the last 8 years, is appropriate.   

I have recommended a text by Tarbuck, et al., titled Earth Science. Although the current edition is the 13th edition (Prentice Hall, 2011), older editions are perfectly appropriate and widely available at reduced cost on internet sites.  If you have access to a different textbook but are unsure whether it is appropriate for this class, simply come and ask me.

Other resources for reading and reference will be provided in class, posted on the course webpage, or posted in Blackboard. 





   * This outline will be adjusted daily as the semester proceeds.  Please check back frequently for updates.  
To see a list of each day's learning objectives, click on the class meeting date for your section
   * To see assignment details, go to the assignments page
Assignment due dates given here are for reference only; check the assignments page for the most current information.
   *  Reading assignments should be completed before coming to class on the day listed.
   *  Lab worksheets and other resources must be printed and brought to class on the day listed.






          Links will be added, and topics updated, as the semester progresses.



  Sections 1, 2, 3      M W  11:00 - 11:50





(listed on the due date; for details, click on link)

9 JAN Introduction to the study of Earth Science    
11 JAN The Earth perspective: a unique, dynamic planet  Assignment 1 - email the instructor  
16 JAN Holiday - Martin Luther King Day    
18 JAN Interactions of Earth Systems; Shaping of the Earth's Surface    
23 JAN Plate Tectonics and Earth Processes    
25 JAN Plate Tectonics and Volcanoes    
 30 JAN Volcanoes, Igneous Rocks, and Mineral Crystallization Assignment 2:  volcano  
1 FEB Processes that shape the earth: Mountain-building; Weathering & Erosion    
6 FEB Sedimentary Processes and Past Environments    
8 FEB EXAM #1 Assignment: volcanoes and rocks  
13 FEB Holiday - Lincoln’s Birthday    
15 FEB Sediments and Geologic History: Interpreting Rocks and Landscapes    
20 FEB Sediments and Sedimentary Environments Assignment  
22 FEB Earth movements: Earthquakes, Plate Tectonics, Isostasy    
27 FEB Shaping the Earth’s Surface: Weathering Processes    
29 FEB      
5 MAR      
7 MAR EXAM #2    
12 MAR      
14 MAR Sedimentary Process and Sedimentary Rocks Assignment - weathering  
19-25 MAR SPRING BREAK      
26 MAR  Shorelines, sediments, and sea levels    
28 MAR Oceans, Shorelines, and more: Interpreting Earth History and Process    
2 APR Geologic Time and Earth History    
4 APR Earth Structures: Mountain Building, Isostasy, and Interpreting Earth Process Assignment -  
9 APR EXAM #3    
11 APR Atmosphere, Weather and Climate;  Clouds and Precipitation Assignment -  
16 APR Air Pressure, Air Masses, Wind, and Weather Systems    
18 APR Weather Patterns and Earth Climates Assignment -  
23 APR Tectonic controls on weather and climate: coming full circle    
25 APR Plate Tectonics and Earth Environments: interpreting earth’s history of change    
30 APR Earth System science - a “big picture” understanding Assignment -  
2 May

  Wednesday, 2 May,
 2:00-3:50 pm      Note the unusual time of day!   

Please check early in the semester for conflicts with any of your scheduled exams, and
contact me if you find a conflict. 







Instructor Info:
        Instructor:     Jean Hemzacek 
(usually the best way to reach me!):     J-Hemzacek(at)
                NOTE!   if typing my email address, make sure to replace the
(at) in the email address with the @ symbol!
        phone/ voicemail: 
773  442 - 6056  (if on-campus, use last 4 digits as extension number)
        Office:  During office hours and in general, you can find me in BBH (Science) 225F. 
                       Mail may be left for me in the marked folder on my office door.

        Office Hours:  Monday  12:00 - 1:00                                  Wednesday   2:00 - 2:30
                                   Tuesday 11:00 - 12:00, 3:00 - 3:30;          Thursday       11:00 - 12:00
                                    or by appointment
Class meeting times: see your syllabus:           
Sections 1, 2, 3  lecture             

and/or  LABS:          

Section 1
(Wed am)
Section 2
(Wed pm)
Section 3
Course Website:
Text: No specific textbook is required; however, each student must have an appropriate textbook reference (earth science or physical geology textbook) published by a scientific or academic publisher in the last 8 years.  One example is Tarbuck and Lutgens, Earth Science, 11th, 12th, 13th edition (Prentice Hall). 
Other resources will be provided in class, posted on the course webpage, or posted in Blackboard. 

Course Documents:
printable versions of basic course documents are available through this page; see your section information at the top of the page
documents are in .pdf form;
if you do not have Adobe® Reader®
click here to download.
Course Description
(From the NEIU catalog)
Introduction to Earth Science, 3 cr.  Basic concepts of geology, meteorology, oceanography, and the solar system.  Discussion of topics of current interest in the earth sciences.  Laboratory involves the study of minerals, rocks, maps, and weather instruments. Lecture 2 hours, lab 2 hours. 
Course Prerequisite:
MATH 102 (Intermediate Algebra). 
This course satisfies the General Education Program Natural Science Laboratory requirement.

Course Outcomes:





After successfully completing this course, you should be able to:
Describe the earth as a dynamic planet– the product of various earth processes– and describe the interactions of earth processes in earth systems and cycles.
Describe the structure of the earth and the nature of solid earth materials, and apply the techniques and tools of mineral and rock identification/classification.
Explain the scientific theory of plate tectonics as a framework for interpreting earth form, process, and change over geologic time.
Describe the various physical processes that shape our planet– from within and on the surface– and correlate these processes to geologic phenomena including earthquakes, volcanoes, mountain building, continental movements, weather and climate, and the development of landscapes.
Analyze geologic data from a variety of published sources to interpret Earth processes.
Read  topographic maps, geologic maps, and weather maps well enough to analyze and interpret the data present, and articulate appropriate conclusions.

Emergency Information
It is recognized that a safe university environment is a shared responsibility of faculty, staff, and students, all of whom are expected to familiarize themselves with and cooperate with emergency procedures.

Web links to Campus Safety: Emergency Procedures and Safety Information can be found on NEIUport, on the MyNEIU tab or as follows (for the Main campus):

SECTIONS 1, 2, 3      Course Requirements           (for more detail, see printed syllabus)
Attendance at all class sessions is expected.  The NEIU policy on class attendance applies to this course.  Frequent in-class assignments will be given and may not be made up.  Students who do not attend regularly will not be given the benefit of the doubt in cases of borderline grades, and a lower grade may be given at the instructor's discretion if absences are excessive. 

The final course grade will be calculated on the following basis:
Scheduled exams (3) 24 %  
Final exam   8 %  
homework assignments 18 %  
Labs and assignments 35 %  
Lab quizzes

15 %

Class contribution ("extra credit") +2.5 %      

The grading scale is: A 100-90%; B 89-80%; C 79-70%; D 69-60%; F 59% and lower.
All course requirements must be completed to pass the course. 

The final date to drop the course, per University policy, is March 30.

Students are expected to check the course webpage and their e-mail at least every other day to watch for course announcements and updates.

Students should bring the following to every class meeting: notebook, handouts, pencil and eraser.  Also bring your textbook if possible.

Students are expected to participate in all course assessments.  On some days, you will be asked to complete anonymous "minute papers", ungraded quiz-type questions, concept maps, or survey-type questions.  This information will help me to determine the extent to which the course is meeting its goals.  To provide me with the most information so that I can make the course better, I ask that you give me your most thoughtful, honest feedback on these assessments.

Academic integrity:  The NEIU policy on academic misconduct will be strictly enforced.   This site from Indiana University explains and gives examples of plagiarism, providing helpful tips on how to avoid plagiarizing.  Cheating on homework, exams, or other course components will result in a score of zero for that element or more severe penalties, as described in the NEIU policy. 

Flexibility: This outline will change as the semester evolves.  Check this page frequently for updates!



Department of Earth Science    |   Northeastern Illinois University

Copyright 2012 J Hemzacek.  Last updated 1 Feb 2012.





The class Wiki is up and running, and is ready for you to sign up for a project topic and read all the project details.

1. The first step is that I must add you as a collaborating member of the wiki site.  Do you already have a google account?  (If you use gmail, this is your google account).  If you have a google account, go to step 2.  If not, you must first create a google account: go to  
In the upper right corner, click on "sign in". Below the sign-in box on that page, there is a smaller box that asks, "Don't have a google account?" Click on "Create an account now". This will guide you through setting up an account with your preferred email. In order to complete the process, you will receive a confirming email; follow the directions to finish creating the account.

2. Send me an email from the email account associated with your google account, with the subject: ESCI 121 section (number) wiki.   When I receive the email, you will an email notification that you have been added.  Click on the link in that email: it will take you to the log-in page for google sites. (If you are using neiu email, right-click the link and choose "open in new window". For some reason, this makes a difference!)
If you have not received an email inviting you to the wiki, it is because you have not yet sent me an email - you should do this immediately!

3. The wiki page will appear and, after you have signed in**, you should see a box at the top right labeled "edit page". If the wiki page loads without a sign-in page, scroll to the bottom of the wiki page, and click "sign in" (at the left of the bottom list). If you are on the wiki page and are signed in, but still do not see the "edit page" button, let me know. Once I add you as a user, when signed in to the wiki, you should have full access to the editing functions. 

4. Stay tuned for more directions as to how we will use the wiki!









stratigraphy and time

Be a geologist!


Interpret the sequence of
sedimentary rocks,
starting with the earliest "event"

What does each rock layer represent, in terms of the
sedimentary environment in which it formed?

What happened to cause a change in the
type of rock formed in a new layer?



Shale (with sandstone)




Shale      fossils of snails, oysters, fish



Sandstone with crossbedding


Claystone & Shale             dinosaur bones


Shale & Limestone            dinosaur tracks






Sandstone, large-scale crossbeds



Limestone           algae, marine fossils




Limestone/ Dolomite


Limestone/ Dolomite


Chapter 10, part 6, Chapter Tutorial, Early Paleozoic Events, Levin 2005: The Earth Through Time, 8th edition, Wiley